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The National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) last week referred to President Obama’s signing of the Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Act, S. 3397, as a victory for the pro-patient, pro-community and pro-pharmacy policy it supports.
The bill empowers the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to allow consumers to return lawfully obtained controlled substance medications to DEA-authorized entities for disposal. Additionally, as Arlington, Va.-based NACDS has urged, the legislation prevents the mandating of drug take-back programs in pharmacies.
“NACDS appreciates the members of Congress, including Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Reps. Jay Inslee (D-Wash.), Bart Stupak (D-Mich.), Joe Barton (R-Texas) and Lamar Smith (R-Texas), who demonstrated a commitment to addressing the issue of drug disposal in a way that will not create new problems for public health and safety,” noted NACDS president and CEO Steven C. Anderson.
Added Anderson: “The fact that this new law does not create a drug take-back program mandate for pharmacies means that these members of Congress listened and kept an open mind, and that deserves a great deal of recognition …. NACDS remains committed to being part of the solution when it comes to advancing the safe use and safe handling of medications.”
The 140 companies that belong to NACDS are traditional drug stores, supermarkets, and mass merchants with pharmacies. Association members also include more than 900 pharmacy and front end suppliers, and nearly 70 international members from 22 countries. Member chains operate 39,000 pharmacies and employ more than 2.7 million employees, including 118,000 full-time pharmacists.